Kuo: iPhone 14 Pro Could Feature 48MP Camera, Periscope Lens in 2023

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 20 Dec 2021

periscope camera iphone 2022

In a research note with TF International Securities, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo speculates that Apple plans to add a 48MP camera to the upcoming iPhone 14, and the 2023 iPhone could feature a periscope lens in 2023.

Kuo speculates that the addition of these new lenses to the iPhone in the coming years could have a positive impact on the shares, revenue, and profit of Taiwanese manufacturer Largan Precision. He mentions that the 2023 iPhone could gain a periscope lens, enabling significantly increased optical zoom capability. By design, periscope lenses allow the optics for high optical zoom to be “folded” into a form factor suitable for smartphones.

Kuo did not add further detail but has previously claimed that the 48MP camera will only be seen on the iPhone 14 Pro models and allow 8K video recording. He said that the 8K footage will be ideal for viewing on the Apple mixed reality headset that is also expected to be launched in 2022.

Rumor has it that the 48MP camera on the iPhone 14 Pro will deliver 48MP output in optimal lighting conditions but will use a 12MP output format in low light conditions to preserve details. This will be enabled by a technology called pixel binning that is already used on several Android smartphones.

Pixel binning is a boon to smartphone camera technology because the sensor size on a device is limited and just increasing the image resolution (megapixels) makes each pixel smaller. On a tiny smartphone camera sensor that captures lesser light than a conventional camera, high resolution causes low-light picture quality to suffer. Pixel binning allows data from groups of pixels to be combined to create a lower resolution image than the sensor’s resolution but retains the details.

In technical terms, it reduces the noise in each pixel of the final image by increasing the signal-to-noise ratio. Even in average conditions, a 12MP pixel binned output from the iPhone 14 Pro’s 48MP sensor could be beneficial because it would occupy less storage space and pack sufficient detail. We suggest you read this explainer about pixel binning if you have some time on your hands.

As for the periscope lens rumor, it is noteworthy that Apple would be rather late to the party if it adds the feature in 2023. Several flagship-grade Android smartphones like the Huawei P40 Pro+ already feature periscope lenses capable of high optical zoom. Unlike digital zoom, optical zoom helps preserve sharpness, clarity, and the image’s resolution.